|Country Wicklow, Ireland|
Niall grew up in a small sea-side town called Bray just outside of Dublin where he lived with his Mum, Dad and two sisters. They are a close knit family and he describes his father as “the funniest man in the world” and his mum as “pure entertainment.” Niall now lives in London but goes back home as often as he can. At school, Niall was told he always talked too much. He was always singing and entertaining in the house and was entered into his first vocal competition at the age of 7. In 2007 Niall auditioned for the TV show Any Dream Will Do. David Grindrod told him to go away and get some training. So aged 26, Niall applied for Mount View College in London and secured a place where he studied for a year but it took a while to land his first West End gig. He was living in London on a budget, juggling part time jobs in various bars as it was proving difficult to break into the industry. He had auditioned for Wicked three times before he was given the opportunity to cover the main male lead. From here Niall got a role in the UK tour of Spamalot and then he saw the advert for Superstar. On getting through the first round, Niall decided he would have to take a gamble and leave Spamalot for an uncertain opportunity.
How did it feel when you found out you got through to the live finals?
To be honest, it was all a bit surreal. I was fully expecting to be told I had gone as far as I could and that it was all over, so when Andrew told me I was through to the live finals, I didn’t really know what I was feeling. It was a really proud moment for me personally, and definitely a huge achievement for me to look back on, once the show finishes. The thought that Andrew Lloyd Webber saw something in me is just mind-blowing to process.
What can we expect from you in the live shows?
I can’t begin to tell you how I’ll act during the live finals; I’ll put the work in and prepare as fully as I can, but I talk like a jackrabbit when I’m nervous, so I would expect some endless rambling from me if I’m given half a chance! I’d like to think I’m a strong actor, so I’m hoping to show that in my performances. Also, I would like to think I’m a fairly likeable person, so hopefully I will be able to bring that across too.
How has the experience been for you so far?
It’s been a bit of a whirlwind. There’s been so much to learn and so many exciting challenges. I really don’t think I’ll take it all in until long after my time here is up. I’ve made some really great friends, both in the group of guys and on the crew and I look forward to working with them during the competition and, hopefully, again afterwards. It hasn’t always been easy going though and I’ve had my fair share of hard moments. I’ve missed my family a lot but I know they’re thinking of me and it makes me all the more determined to make them proud of me.
What would winning Superstar mean to you and how do you think it will change your life?
Winning this competition would be a truly incredible achievement. I’ve always been my own worst critic but having made it this far has really helped me believe in myself. The thought of winning fills me with pride; to be able to represent my family, town and country in this competition means everything to me, I’m determined not to let anyone down. It would change my life by giving me something to be genuinely proud of; I have always tried to work hard at everything and I think triumphing and being giving the title role of Jesus would prove that anything is possible if you put your heart into it – I know it sounds corny, but I genuinely believe it. I’ve had so many reasons to give up over the years, but it has always been determination and the support of my friends and family that have made me keep trying, winning this competition would mean more to me than I could ever really explain.